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As you may well have seen, Drunken Batman has posted an exhaustingly exhaustive summary of the state of play of CherryOS, and more significantly, VX30, Maui X-Stream's video streaming package. It's a long post, and about as straightforward as Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. ^_^ It features chat logs, emails, and lawyerly missives from the star performers - feel free to skip over the initial proofs, and get stuck in at the phpAdsNew section.

The Oracle Space Sweepstakes have a grand prize of note: a flight up to 62 miles, for 5-10 minutes of weightlessness. (Plus $35k, if your desires are purely earthly) Closes at the end of May. Other prizes include PowerBooks, iPods, and Star Wars DVD sets.

sockscatt pointed out these video clips of a Japanese robotic cat. Well worth a peek. (Unlike Aibo et al, this one tries to look like a natural cat, rather than a 'droid)

Rather a nifty animated rabbit GIF, by mysterymrglenn. "40 frames of animation done by hand, 80 layers for the colors and effects."

Walking a very thin line between being hilarious and horrifying, the 1951 On Becoming a Woman. (Just wait until the author starts talking about masturbation and homosexuality)

tilton: "Spotlight rocks my world so hard that my nipples have almost popped off several times."

Just out of curiosity, I wondered whether I could run OpenVMS (née VAX/VMS) - silly question, really. There exists the multi-platform (in both senses) SIMH ("maintained by the arguably legendary Bob Supnik, who had a pivotal role in the original development of a number of Digital's machines, serving at one time as technical director for the Alpha and VAX groups at DEC"), available for a wide range of host OSs; an OS X suite of binaries can be found here.

And with a certain amount of surprise, I discovered OpenVMS 7.3, plus allied packages, is available to purchase, for non-commercial use, at a highly reasonable $30, including worldwide postage. This article covers the process for getting a useful OpenVMS installation up.

From last week's Have I Got News For You (praise BitTorrent): "It's hard to find a more disliked man than Blair, but the Tories managed."

I found this picture amusing, charming, and with a certain joie de vivre. ^_^ (Winner of "Safest Picture for Work 2005")

I think I'll try out QT7's H.264 (aka AVC, or MPEG-4 Part 10) encoding implementation sometime, but rather than aiming for HDTV resolutions, as found on some of Apple's newer trailers (supposedly very high quality, but similarly demanding of the computer), I'm more interested in seeing how it fares against "vanilla" MPEG-4 at low bitrates.

Amidst eps. 23-24 of Yakitate Japan, I noticed the translator's note for the phrase they'd given as "pearls before swine", originally inu ni nenbutsu neko ni koban, "saying prayers to a dog or casting gold before a cat".
 
 
 
 
 
 
I've been an avid fan of Bob Supnik's SIMH for a number of years, first as a PDP-11 simulator, and now as a PDP-10 and VAX simulator. I have a hardware VAX here (a desktop-box VAXstation 4000/90), but it is (a) loud, with its full-height 9GB SCSI drive whirring, and (b) uses electricity, so if I ever hanker for a VMS toying experience I tend to fire up SIMH. I'm an oddball, though, and I've been a DECUS member since 1996, so your milage may vary!

I do suggest you join the Hobbyist Program to support them and get the newest Hobbyist CD (version 3), but if you want to start playing with the VAX simulator right away, you can ftp to ftp://ftp.retronet.net/, cd to /pub/OpenVMS/, and download CD images of either the V1 Hobbyist CD (VAX/VMS 5.4, 5.5-2, OpenVMS 6.0, layered products) or the V2 Hobbyist CD (OpenVMS 7.1, OpenVMS 7.2, layered products) and start with those! 5.5-2 is probably my favorite blend of retro-but-still-useful VMS :)
Ooh, I wonder if that's similar to the DECstations the Uni had.. nope, Chuck's House of VAX doesn't have any pics, but it's a fun little ramble anyway. ^_^ Can't recall the model, but they were quite nice little systems to use, having 20" monitors (separate RGBsync signals on four BNCs.. I'd say I'd love to have one of those now, but I'm not sure I have space :) - being of some value, they took the precaution of installing them in a Halon-equipped room next to the system room. I can't say I ever felt quite at ease, knowing my asphyxiation was only a faulty logic gate or two away.. ^_^;

you can ftp to ftp://ftp.retronet.net/

Oh, finestkind! With money being in rather short supply at the moment, that'll be an ideal re-introduction to the OS. (Not that it'll ever happen, by the sound of it, but I kept wishing Portfolio, the 3DO's OS, could be open sourced. Really quite pleasant to code for, with an efficient multithreading/priority model, and all in something like 800K. But Trip Hawkins seems to be firmly of the mindset that if he can't make money off it, nobody's going to see it. I imagine it'd be fairly closely tied to the hardware anyway, but a full-spec 3DO emulator would be fun to see. Wish I still had a copy of The 11th Hour for said console.. I was really quite pleased with how my video codec turned out :)

I was astonished to read just how large DECUS meetings of the 80s were! Even now, it'd be difficult for pretty much any OS to gather tens of thousands of people together. (One wonders if there are even that many RISC OS users left..)